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Showcase preps students for success

Communication seniors gained practical work experience by participating in the Senior Showcase on Nov. 19 in the BYU-Idaho Center.

Seniors studying communication are required to create a senior project to be displayed at the end of the semester at the Senior Showcase, according to the communication department Web page. These projects are specific to the interests and emphasis of each student.

Examples of projects included creating websites, social media marketing campaigns, fashion blogs, small business campaigns, starting a business and creating promotional videos.

Jacob Reeser, a senior studying communication with an emphasis in advertising, assisted the Museum of Idaho by boosting its social media presence for his senior project.

“In talking with them, they really wanted to improve attendance for their education program,” Reeser said. “I created a post for each event, I made the graphic, the copy describing the event and put them out two weeks in advance.”

Through the social media marketing campaign, attendance to events held at the museum has increased by over 100 percent, Reeser said.

He said classes like Creating Online Media and his experience managing social media for the Academic Discovery Center helped Reeser prepare for his project and will help him in his future career.

Caley Wilson, a senior studying communication with an emphasis in public relations, was an event coordinator for the Las Vegas Fire Department. She helped create a week-long event to celebrate the 50th anniversary of metro fire chiefs throughout the world.

Wilson spent nine months working on her project from August 2014 to April 2015 when the event took place.

“Networking is always really important, but it is also important to be passionate about what you are doing,” Wilson said. “If I didn’t like all of the stress of an event or like the organization, it wouldn’t have been as successful.”

Hayley Ward, a senior studying communication with an emphasis in visual media, started an online business creating wedding announcements and other designs.

“My husband wants to be a financial advisor for Edward Jones, and with that, we will probably be moving to a lot of different places,” Ward said. “I decided that I would just come up with my own business so that wherever we move, I could take it with me.”

The process of proposing her idea to her mentor was easy, Ward said. She felt that her mentor had her best interests at heart and wanted her to succeed.

Ward said that through the process of preparing for the Senior Showcase, she has developed personality traits such as patience, persistence and consistency.

Ward said that because of the Senior Showcase, she will continue to develop her website and add new products.

Matthew Scott, a senior studying communication with an emphasis in organizational communication and advocacy, started an advocacy group for patriotism called the Old Glory 10K with his brothers. For his senior project, he planned a coast-to-coast run to serve and promote patriotism in communities throughout the U.S., Scott said.

The Sea to Shining Sea Relay will consist of a team of 22 people starting from the coast of California and go to the coast of Virginia, doing service and inviting members of the community to join in, Scott said.

“I wanted it to be more than just a line on my resume,” Scott said. “There is a lot that I have done that I can incorporate into our organization.”

Sixty-six students participated in the Senior Showcase from almost every emphasis, including public relations, visual media, marketing, organizational communication and advocacy, advertising and news/ journalism, according to the Communication Summit program.

“The Senior Showcase is the project that is supposed to push you to your limits and be something you can continue after graduation,” Wilson said. “Starting on something you are passionate about and having the ability to push yourself is something that will make you successful in the end.”

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